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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So after much deliberation I have decided that a tank topper would be the most spacious (and cheapest) option. My aquarium is is an odd size, though, so i am going to build it. I have a bunch of unused chicken wire. The tank is a sturdy 37.4 gallons so if you have any suggestions about how I should go about starting this project please suggest away.
 

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selfdestructingturnip said:
So after much deliberation I have decided that a tank topper would be the most spacious (and cheapest) option. My aquarium is is an odd size, though, so i am going to build it. I have a bunch of unused chicken wire. The tank is a sturdy 37.4 gallons so if you have any suggestions about how I should go about starting this project please suggest away.
without lecturing about the pitfalls of aquariums (Ill leave that to someone else) I will say Id recommend not using chicken wire, its not very sturdy and most females and all young rats will be able to escape through it. Look for hardware cloth instead.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's a long. And the wire I have, they cannot escape from. I don't think it is actually chicken wire, but no matter, it is wire and mesh.

Also, I know why an aquarium is unhealthy. Otherwise, I would have no intention of building topper, so please, stop giving me those kinds of comments. It is obviously unnecessary.
 

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Allright Make sure that u have safe wire first of all i think the stuff u have or need to get in called hardware cloth. U need to first of all draw a sketck of ur design. I would build a rectangle that securely sets onto the cage. To be successfull u will really need to look at these pics closely!

















The big problem with the topper is going to be finding a good way to set it on top of the glass aqaurium without any excape room. also i wouldnt try to fashion your own shelves until you make the topper itself. I enjoy making shelves by sticking long sticks through the bars.

However you decide to do this ill be with u for any technical questions the whole way. safety is the most important factor in this project as tank toppers can be dangerous if made wrong.


Make a flip top door along with a good sized regular door. this will make it possible to hang hammocks add alrge toys and igloos ect..


Any specific questions???

I am not sure exactly what kinda help ur looking for...so be more specific and i hope i helped or can help in the [email protected]!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you. For keeping it on the tank, I am thinking of attaching it to some
1 by 1 corner molding. That way it will be removable is necessary for moving the tank or putting toys in and such. The wire is also heavy enough to weigh it down so they cannot push it off (and it would be corner molding so that shouldn't be a problem). The biggest problem I see so far is shaping the wire and safely cutting. I was thinking I could make a frame with 8 1 by 1 posts.
 

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Okay give me the measurements of ur aquarium and ill figure out a simple pic and measurements to send u!
 

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selfdestructingturnip said:
Also, I know why an aquarium is unhealthy. Otherwise, I would have no intention of building topper, so please, stop giving me those kinds of comments. It is obviously unnecessary.
overreact much?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sorry, haven't checked the forum in a bit. The measurements are 36 by 16 by 15. It's a nice big tank. I also have a 10 gallon, which you can get toppers easily for, but I figured the bigger one is always better even if it takes me much longer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I believe you are missing the reasons an aquarium is bad. A topper would eliminate such reasons as ventilation problems and trapped smells (yes it still will need to be cleaned more often than a completely wire cage).
 

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Aquariums are only bad if it is just the aquarium, using pine, and not good cleaning schedules. selfdestructingturnip (that was a chore lol) seems to be well aware of this and is doing the right thing with making the topper in my opinion anyway.

Building a frame for it will be a great idea plus you can get wire cutters at any hardware store. You may want to think about cutting the pieces out then re attaching them with c - rings that will make things a bit sturdier.
 

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Dude why dont u just make a new cage! by the time u buy the roll of wire and the wood for the frame u already might as well build a new cage money wise!!!

if your still interested in the topper let me kno and ill sketch u a blueprint that will work well!!!


If you decide to make a new healthier cage let me kno and i can give you a nice blueprint for that too!

And the topper wont help the aqaurium vent out much better than the screen itll only give ur rats a place to hide from the nasty gases and germs! If you think the topper is gonna fix all your problems it definetely wont!!

Heres the price of an easy new cage and how its made if you decide this idea ill show u more pics!

I had to buy 4 pine wood furring boards 1X3 <---what the lumberstore calls the board! (3/4 thick by 2 & 1/2inch wide by 8ft long!) <--- finished or (actual) size of board!

wood= $10 (at alexander lumberstore)
3ft X 10ft Hardware cloth= $15 (at alexander lumberstore)
storage drawer= $6 (at Dollar Gen.)

extra things (hinges, industrial staplegun, nails 1.5in & 2.5 inch & 3in, knife, needlenose pliers, electric drill/screwdriver, tape measure) other useful items to aid u in the construction of a cage...

What the cage looks like when its finished!






If you wanna build something like this one then let me kno for detailed instructions! If you still wish for the topper ill help u out with it!
 

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selfdestructingturnip said:
I believe you are missing the reasons an aquarium is bad. A topper would eliminate such reasons as ventilation problems and trapped smells (yes it still will need to be cleaned more often than a completely wire cage).
Not really, they only benefit from the extra ventilation if they're on top in the wire part. Most likely they will sleep in the aquarium, which is bad, regardless of bedding type.

If you've going to build a topper why not just make a cage? It would probably be easier and it will be better for the rats
 

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I hope everyone can see my point as well as Glindella did! =)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thank you for all your suggestions! I think I am going to go with the topper. I bought some 3/4 '' posts and my mom and I are going to hop to it this weekend. They get out daily, by the way and I let the cage air out often while they are still in only it. The biggest problem is going to be the wire. It is rather stiff and will be difficult to straighten out and bend to the frame. Ah, well. I guess I need to get some gloves.
 

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allright are these posts sqaure?? make sure u have enough for a large framed door! well i guess with the topper u only need a small one... do u need a blueprint??? i can make up a simple one and get u it by the weekend!!
 
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